ASHEBORO — The Heart of North Carolina 2023 Official Travel Guide celebrates both the Year of the Trail in North Carolina and the 25th anniversary of the Randolph County Tourism Development Authority.
The TDA Board of Directors got a sneak peak of the brochure at its Feb. 15 meeting. The cover features the family of Jasmine Joachin, a former intern serving jointly with the TDA and Economic Development Corporation. The family is pictured hiking at the NC Zoo.
Opening up the brochure, you find a welcome from Mary Joan Pugh, trail coordinator for Randolph County. Referencing the state’s Year of the Trail, she says, “In the Heart of North Carolina, Randolph County, we have trail events, ribbon cuttings and special recognitions planned for seven municipalities including the Deep River State Trail, the Uwharrie National Recreation Trail and Caraway Creek Preserve. The North Carolina Zoo welcomes visitors to take a hike on one of their nature trails, inside or outside of the park, on June 3, 2023, National Trails Day.
“No matter what your skill level or ability on trails, we invite you to find your outdoor adventure any season on one of our paved greenways or natural surface pathways. Get started by checking out the Randolph County Trail Guide with over 19 trails listed — PiedmontTrails.org/Trails-Near-Asheboro.
“For additional tips on how to maneuver our portion of the Deep River State Trail that will soon connect Randleman, Franklinville and Ramseur, request our Deep River State Trail Guide. You are destined to find your favorite trailway in the Heart of North Carolina!”
Of course, there are more things to do in Randolph County other than hiking. The brochure has panels for all the municipalities in Randolph County, from Asheboro to Trinity.
The NC Zoo, NC Aviation Museum and Hall of Fame and American Classic Motorcycle Museum are featured as well as Bicentennial Park, the historic Sunset Theatre and McCrary Ballpark, home of the Asheboro Zookeepers.
Richard Petty and the Petty Family Attraction head up the Randleman panel. But the city also boasts the NC Food Truck State Championship at Commerce Square Park, bass fishing on Randleman Lake and access to the Deep River State Trail.
Known for its vast community of potters, annual events include a Potters’ Pumpkin Patch, Tea with Seagrove Potters and Pottery Festival Weekend. But the village also takes pride in Seagrove Orchids, Carolina Bronze Sculpture and Gardens, B3 Artisan Wares and Studio, Fiber & Fire Gallery, The General Wine & Brew and Asheboro Popcorn Co.
You can find year-round thrills at Kersey Valley Attractions, with ziplining, bomb bowling, axe throwing, laser tag and escape rooms. Seasonal events are Spookywoods, Maize Adventure, and Lights, Action, Santa! Archdale offers family fun at Creekside Park & Greenway, with walking trails, playgrounds, dog park, tennis courts and disc golf. Just outside town is Holly Ridge Golf Links, which now features The Bunker, an indoor simulated golf and sports experience.
The pride of Trinity is Linbrook Heritage Estate, one of the largest privately owned destinations in the Southeast. Compare the mansion with the nearby Historic Hoover House to trace the Neal family history. Also, the Neal Agricultural and Industrial Museum features a collection of John Deere tractors. The City of Trinity offers visitors a look at its past in the Trinity Museum/Winslow House, one of the antebellum houses left in the Old Trinity College area.
The Deep River State Trail travels through Franklinville along the river. Cross the old footbridge to the Faith Rock Trail to see where American patriot Andrew Hunter escaped the Tories by riding a horse down the 75-foot rock into the river.
A big draw is Millstone Creek Orchards, where families can take tours, visit the Apple Barn Country Store and purchase fresh produce. The town holds annual festivals and the historic downtown is often the location for feature films. And, of course, there’s a segment of the Deep River State Trail.
Well-known for the Liberty Showcase Theater, Liberty has become a draw for performances by rising stars and established national talent. The Liberty Antiques Festival is held twice a year and brings 400 vendors from across the country.
A rural farming community, Staley is home of the county’s oldest homestead, the Thomas Marley House built in 1816. It’s listed on the National Registry of Historic Places.
Open up the brochure and on the back side you’ll find a map of Randolph County with a list of accommodations and locations of attractions. There are separate maps of potteries, both inside and outside the Seagrove area.
On the left column beside the maps is a calendar of trail events in Randolph County, from March through December of 2023.
Richard Schoenberger of Manor House Creative was instrumental in putting together the Visitors Guide. He told the board, “What we’ve come up with works really well. So there’s no reason to reinvent the wheel.”
The 2023 Official Travel Guide will be available soon at the Heart of NC Visitors Bureau, 500 Albemarle Road, Asheboro. For information, call 336-626-0364.